Written by Deputy Chairman Alan Beard, the book – ‘125 Years of Construction 1892–2017: A Family Story’ – traces the history of the firm through five generations of the Beard family, beginning with the somewhat wayward George Henry Beard.
Alan Beard said: “This has been a real labour of love for me. We have always been a proudly family-run firm; tracing its history has also enabled me to learn much more about my own family’s past.
“I have been thrilled to discover there are still so many photographs and other material still available, and also to discover the real affection the firm is held in by its staff, past and present.”
Current executive chairman Mark Beard said: “This book is a wonderful way to mark the first 125 years of Beard, and to pay tribute to the many people who have worked so hard over the years to make it the success it is today.
“To be able to trace the firm back to its origins and beyond is a powerful reminder that although the construction industry has changed a great deal over the years, the fundamentals – doing the best job and treating people well – are the same now as they were in Queen Victoria’s time.”
Alan’s grandfather, Edward William Beard, formally established Beard in 1892, at the age of 14. He went on to live to 104 and featured in the Guinness Book of World Records for the longest working career. Alan himself is now 87 years old and continues to play an active role in the business. His son, Mark Beard, is the fourth generation of the family to run the firm.
Initially centred around the Swindon office, the firm has now expanded to branch offices in Oxford, Guildford and Bristol and carries out projects across southern England.
The book also features a large selection of photographs of the Beard family and of the construction projects the company has been involved in over the years, including many fine examples of the firm’s work on scholastic and ecclesiastical buildings.
Copies can be obtained from Beard’s Swindon office and the firm would invite contributions to the Beard Charitable Foundation, which makes grants to a range of local good causes determined by the firm’s staff. Interested parties should visit www.beardconstruction.co.uk, or call 01793 868 000 for further information.